Niall Byrne, nialler9.com If you’re a new band looking to get heard, be a self-starter.
Don’t hire a PR company. Make a list of people in the media who might be into the music based on what they cover. Get familiar with their output before contacting them.
Use your common sense. Don’t send your band’s EP of heavy rock to a dance music columnist. Don’t send printed photographs of your band to anyone, especially radio. Everyone is busy. Music writers want clear and concise information. Send a personally written email to a single person (no CC’d multiple recipients, tweets or personal Facebook messages). Address them by their first name with a short fact-driven bio, release info, two links to music (one to the release’s lead track, another to the whole release, hosted privately on Soundcloud or Bandcamp or similar). Include tour dates, contact info and a link to a hi-res photo. You can also offer a download of the release through an online file host but don’t attach large files to emails.
As a rule, don’t send CDs to online media or anyone under 30. If requested, send a CD and a one-sheet featuring the above and include website links (get your own website as Facebook page reach is only going down).
No lollipops, sneaky fivers or novelty items – you’re a band presumably making worthwhile music, not a creepy uncle.
Make a plan for the release that covers the three months either side of the release date. Don’t rush it. Give media time to hear the music, schedule a review or interview, and if the process goes well for all involved, promote your worthwhile art to a new audience and enrich the lives of millions.